Place:Kingswinford, Staffordshire, England

TypeTown, Urban district
Coordinates52.498°N 2.165°W
Located inStaffordshire, England     ( - 1974)
Also located inWest Midlands, England     (1974 - )
See alsoNorth Seisdon Hundred, Staffordshire, Englandhundred of which the parish was a part
Kingswinford Rural, Staffordshire, Englandrural district of which it was part 1894-1934
Brierley Hill, Staffordshire, Englandurban district in which it was located 1934-1966
Dudley, Worcestershire, Englandcounty borough of which it was part 1966-1974
Dudley (metropolitan borough), West Midlands, Englandmetropolitan borough in which it has been located since 1974
source: Family History Library Catalog
the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia

Kingswinford is now a suburban area of the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley, in the West Midlands, England. In 2001, its population was 25,808.

The ancient parish of Kingswinford spanned Wordsley, Brierley Hill and Quarry Bank. The parishes of Kingswinford and Amblecote formed the Kingswinford Rural District in 1894.

Kingswinford was added to the Brierley Hill urban district in 1935, which became part of the County Borough of Dudley in 1966 and then the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley in 1974. However, the rural part of the parish was added to Kinver in 1935, becoming part of Seisdon Rural District in 1966 and since 1974 it has been part of the South Staffordshire District.

end of Wikipedia contribution

From: A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 289-292. Reproduced by British History Online Date accessed: 11 February 2011.

"SWINFORD, KING'S (Holy Trinity), a parish, in the union of Stourbridge, N. division of the hundred of Seisdon, S. division of the county of Stafford, 3 miles (W. by S.) from Dudley; containing 22,221 inhabitants, [and lies within the Diocese of Lichfield Episcopal Consistory Court].
"This parish, which is situated on the roads from Dudley to Stourbridge, and from Wolverhampton to Worcester, comprises by admeasurement 7315 acres, of which 3510 are arable, 1607 meadow and pasture, 454 woodland and plantations, and the remainder common and waste. The scenery is greatly diversified, and enlivened by numerous tastefully-embellished demesnes, some of which abound with stately and valuable timber. Prestwood is an elegant mansion beautifully situated in an extensive park separated from the parish of Kinfare by the river Stour. Fir-Tree House, Summer Hill, Ashwood House, and Wordsley House, are good residences; and Lawns-Wood is a handsome structure in the Italian style, erected at a cost of £20,000, on an eminence commanding some fine views, and in a demesne which has been much improved.
"The situation of King's-Swinford in a country abounding with iron and coal, has given rise to the establishment of extensive manufactures, the principal being those of iron, tin, and glass. Facility of conveyance is afforded by the Dudley and Stourbridge and the Staffordshire and Worcestershire canals, which both pass through the parish, and to the latter of which a railway from the principal mines was constructed by the late Earl of Dudley. In 1845 an act was passed for a railway from Oxford to Wolverhampton, with a branch of 2½ miles to King's-Swinford. The Oak-Farm Company's iron and steel works were established in 1835, for the manufacture of all kinds of iron and steel goods, including those for which patents had been granted to James Boydell, Esq., the managing partner. The Corbyn's-Hall collieries and iron-works were established in 1818, and afford employment to about 800 persons. The Lays iron and coal mines, established in 1835, give occupation to 450 persons; and in the Brockmore iron and tin works, established in 1844, 300 persons are engaged. There are also some extensive works for blue brick and tiles, which are remarkable for their durability in subterraneous buildings; some potteries for stone ware and earthenware of every kind; a wire-mill, and manufactories for nails, chains, and scythes. A court leet and court baron are held annually for the manor, and the inhabitants claim exemption from tolls under charter of Queen Elizabeth, confirmed by Charles I. Pettysessions are held every Monday and Thursday, and a copyhold court occasionally.
"The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £17. 13. 4., and in the gift of Lord Ward: the tithes have been commuted for £800, and the glebe comprises 165 acres. The church, erected in 1831, at a cost of £10,000, on a site at Wordsley given by the late Earl of Dudley, is a handsome structure in the later English style, with a square embattled tower, and, by a special act of parliament, has been made the mother church: the parsonage-house, erected in 1838, is also a handsome building. The former parish church, dedicated to St. Mary, and now a chapel, is an ancient edifice, with a massive tower, and contains monumental inscriptions to the families of Corbyn, Scott, Hodgetts, and Bendy: the living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £450; patron, Lord Ward. There are churches at Brierly Hill, Brockmoor, Pensnett, and Quarry-Bank. The Baptists, Independents, Primitive Methodists, and Wesleyans, have places of worship. Holbeche House, in the parish, was the residence of Sir Stephen Littleton, who, being concerned in the gunpowder plot, fled for concealment to Rowley Regis. It was then occupied by Catesby and other conspirators, who defended it as their last retreat, against the sheriff of Worcester; but by the blowing up of their powder, Catesby and Piercy with two others were killed on the spot, several were dreadfully burnt, and those who made their escape were afterwards taken and publicly executed. On Ashwood Heath are some remains of a Roman encampment; and the spa called Ladywell is partly in the parish."

Research Tips

Staffordshire Research Tips

Reminder: Staffordshire today covers a much smaller area than formerly. The West Midlands now governs the southeastern corner of pre-1974 Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, although ceremonially still part of Staffordshire, is a unitary authority covering a large well-populated part of the north of the county.

  • The William Salt Library is the reference library in Stafford and is adjacent to the county archive offices. They have an online catalogue of their holdings.
  • GENUKI lists other large libraries in Staffordshire for Wolverhampton, Burton-upon-Trent, Dudley, Walsall, and Sandwell. The last three of these places are now in the West Midlands and may hold items of local interest which are no longer housed in Staffordshire libraries and archives. For example, The Walsall Archives Centre keeps local census records and local church records.
  • The Birmingham & Midland Society for Genealogy and Heraldry includes Staffordshire in its remit. It has branches in Stoke-on-Trent, Burton-on-Trent and Wolverhampton. Publications are available through the BMSGH shop. Payments accepted by debit and credit card and by Paypal. Other family history and local history societies situated around Staffordshire are listed by GENUKI.
  • The Midlands Historical Data project produces searchable facsimile copies of old local history books and directories of interest to genealogists. It specialises in the three counties of Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Staffordshire, working closely with libraries, archives and family history societies in the area. Digital images are made freely available to participating organisations to improve public access. Free search index on its web-site to all its books. In many cases payment will be required to see the extract.
  • GENUKI makes a great many suggestions as to other websites with worthwhile information about Staffordshire as well as leading to a collection of 19th century descriptions of each of the ecclesiastical parishes.
  • The FamilySearch Wiki provides a similar information service to GENUKI which may be more up-to-date. An index of parishes leads to notes and references for each parish. The auxiliary website English Jurisdictions can also be helpful.
  • A Vision of Britain through Time has
  1. organization charts of the hierarchies of parishes within hundreds, registration districts (1837 onwards) and the rural and urban districts of the 20th century. They have just announced (August 2015) a future expansion to their data including 2011 census population data and links to post-1974 county organization.
  2. excerpts from a gazetteer of circa 1870 outlining individual towns and parishes
  3. reviews of population through the time period 1800-1960
  • Brett Langston's list of Staffordshire Registration Districts and parishes within each registration district from 1837 to the present can indicate where to find details of civil registration entries since the process began in England.
  • More local sources can often be found by referring to "What Links Here" in the column on the left.
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